I’ll admit I’m not the best at judging the size of an audience. Some products I’ve come out with I just do because I was inspired. Looks like Seth Godin agress that the biggest problem of marketers.
The biggest problem marketers make is misjudging their audience. The see the size of the market, but not its true nature: Their accessibility and eagerness. Their worldview and motivation. All too often, we say, “that’s Sales’ job.” And it’s true, a superstar salesperson might very well be able to sell to an audience that doesn’t want to be sold to.
Marketers are guilty of hoping for too much from a typical salesforce. In my experience, 90% of the salespeople out there are below average because performance is a curve, not a line. The superstars are hard to find, hard to keep and hard to count on scaling. So that means you must create a product that doesn’t require a superstar to sell it. And the only way you’re going to sell an ad to a [insert difficult marketplace here] is to create a product/service/story that sells itself.
That is why I love telling the story of about the Prosperity Gorilla. A businessman play a game I write about in my book Prosperity Games. It’s called Prosperity Scramble. He writes down several things he loves on individual pieces of paper and put them face down on the table. He then scrambles them up and randomly turns over two of them. He now thinks up of ideas based on these two words. He flipped over giving away gifts anonymously and gorillas. He loved both of these things.
So he came up with the idea for Gorilla Grams. He gave himself a week and $100 to see if the idea was viable. He tried out a full gorilla suit but found it too hot so he put on a suit and just the head, hands and feet. He then got on a city bus and handed out flyers for him delivering packages, flowers or anything at all. By the end of the week he had more busines than he could handle and he had to start hiring people. Two years later he retires to Hawaii.
Be fast like the Gorilla Gram guy was. Come out quick with and see what the market is like. If it flopped play the game again and try again.
Seth has some good questions to ask about a market you want to get into at Seth’s Blog: Don’t sell to bar owners.